152. Summary of Conclusions of a Special Coordination Committee Meeting1


  • Security Assistance for Kenya


    • State
    • Deputy Secretary of State Warren Christopher
    • Lucy Benson, Under Secretary for Security Assistance, Science and Technology
    • William Harrop, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Africa
  • Defense

    • David McGiffert, Assistant Secretary for International Security Affairs
    • Major General John G. Hill, Survey Team Chief, Kenya
  • CIA

    • William Parmenter, NIO, Africa
  • JCS

    • Lt. General William Y. Smith, Assistant to the Chairman
  • ACDA

    • Dr. Barry Blechman, Assistant Director, Weapons Evaluation and Control Bureau
  • OMB

    • Edward Sanders, Deputy Associate Director, International Affairs Division
  • White House

    • David Aaron
  • NSC

    • Leslie G. Denend

Summary of Conclusions

The SCC focused first on the gap between the survey team report2 which sets out an ambitious $1 billion ten year program requiring up to 50% of Kenya’s foreign exchange earnings during the period and the proposed US response which would assist in providing less than five percent of the program during the first three years. Defense maintained that the report is a credible assessment of the threat to Kenya and that since it calls for a phased response to Kenya’s needs and the participation of other suppliers, the Kenyans would not view our initial [Page 404] modest response as inadequate. The CIA felt that the report would not make the Kenyans psychologically dependent on the US. The Kenyans view the report as a professional analysis of their military needs. ACDA added that the Kenyans could be counted on to make a realistic evaluation of the threat. State viewed the report as a realistic assessment of Kenyan needs and that it was worthwhile for the US to offer them the limited package dictated by available resources. There was agreement that the survey team chief would return to Kenya and present the report.3 He would indicate US willingness to provide assistance teams and bring back any Kenyan request for equipment.

Next, the SCC turned to financing. The most urgent priority contained in the report is the 32 helicopters equipped with TOW anti-tank missiles costing $44 million. The only immediate source of funds is the reprogramming of FY ’78 and ’79 FMS credit. Because it is not possible to find the full $44 million in FY ’78 and ’79, US approval of the sale would necessarily imply that Kenya must finance a part of the total cost. Defense and State maintained that it would be militarily unsound to offer fewer helicopters. Also, because of the uncertainties associated with the FY ’79 FMS credit request, reprogramming should focus only on FY ’78. State offered the $10 million previously identified for Somalia (Taiwan $5, Indonesia $2, Thailand $1, Morocco $1, and Jordan $1) plus $2 million additional from Jordan. Aaron pointed out that the donor countries involved have not yet been notified of that previous decision. He questioned the wisdom of taking funds which were identified in response to one set of circumstances and applying them to a different situation. He registered the VP’s concern over the possible impact of cuts to Indonesia and Thailand. Defense added that the cuts to Jordan would send an appropriate message. State felt that Morocco should not receive further cuts. There was agreement that it was not necessary to make the final decision at this meeting on where the cuts would take place. The exact donors would be identified closer to the end of the fiscal year when it became clearer as to which FMS credit agreements might not be signed in FY ’78. For FY ’79, the Kenyans are programmed to receive $6 million in credit which is not yet committed. Because of possible cuts in the FY ’79 appropriation, it might not be possible to find more. There was also agreement to view Kenya sympathetically during the FY ’80 budget cycle. The survey team chief was directed not to disappoint the Kenyans by calling attention to the FMS credit problem, but to indicate that $12 million would be reprogrammed in FY ’78.

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Staff Material, Office, Box 33, INT documents: 4300s–4400s, 7–8/78. Secret. The meeting took place in the White House Situation Room.
  2. See Document 150 for the preliminary report. The survey team produced a full report on April 28. (Washington National Records Center, OSD Files, FRC 330–81–0202, Box 58, Kenya 091.3—1978)
  3. See Document 153.